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In a lengthy, multi-topic interview with Polygon, Nintendo of America President Doug Bowser answered a burning question for Nintendo fans — what’s the deal with March 31st?

For whatever reason, multiple releases are either ending circulation or leaving the eShop on that date. These include Super Mario 3D All-Stars and, more curiously, certain digital-only offerings. While it will likely be possible to track down physical 3D All-Stars copies, the digital-only likes of Super Mario Bros. 35 (and even Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light) will vanish from the eShop come April 2021.

When asked about this looming (though admittedly well known at this point) deadline, Bowser tied it to the idea of celebration.

“I think I use a simple word: celebration. It just — this is a celebration of Mario’s 35th anniversary. And we wanted to celebrate in unique and different ways,…”

The above ties everything to Super Mario’s 35th Anniversary, an ongoing celebration and stream of releases that have been going well for Nintendo. While it wasn’t mentioned, presumably Fire Emblem fits the same idea on a smaller scale thanks to its own 30th Anniversary.

When pressed on this as a consumer-friendly strategy, specifically for future Switch owners past March 31st, Bowser followed up with:

“Yeah, at this point, the decision was really made around that celebration feature and aspect. I can’t speak to plans beyond the the end of March.”

Hopefully there could be some future alternative for these releases, and Nintendo sees that despite the success of these limited times there’s some fan outcry. With more milestones on the way, such as The Legend of Zelda 35th Anniversary, it will be interesting to see how Nintendo handles them going forward.

We encourage you to read Polygon’s full interview with Doug Bowser, and have covered some other main points:


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Written by Ricky Berg

When he isn’t writing for Nintendo Wire, Ricky’s anticipating the next Kirby, Fire Emblem, or if the stars ever align, Mother 3 to be released. Till then he’ll have the warm comfort of Super Smash Bros. to keep him going.